Chatham village looks to make a bucket loader list

CHATHAM – The Village Board has authorized Village Clerk Barbara Henry and Philip Genovese, head of the village Department of Public Works (DPW), to look into available funding for a new loader for the department.

Mr. Genovese said at the June 9 Village Board meeting that the department’s current loader is 24 years old and leaking oil. “It’s getting tired,” he said, adding that a loader, a piece of machinery with a bucket for moving earth or other materials, is something his crew uses every day. “It’s the heart of our department,” he said.

He also said he was not asking for the board to find extra money in the budget to buy or lease a new loader. He said the payments on a new loader would be about $16,000 a year, which would be shared among three departments: water, sewer and streets. He said each department could find approximately $5,000 in its budget to the cover its share of the yearly payment.

“I think we could find the money and not have to burden the taxpayers,” he said. The total cost of a loader would be about $139,000 and he and Ms. Henry are going to research low interest loans and leases.

Mr. Genovese also suggested the village could sell the current loader for about $20,000, which would cover the first year’s payment on a new loader.

The board also approved his request to rent an excavator at a cost of $2,238 a month. Mr. Genovese said that to hire contractors to do the work that his crew could do with an excavator would cost $2,000 a day, but that they only needed the excavator seasonally so there was no reason for the village to buy one.

During his report on the Sewer and Water departments, Mr. Genovese said that residents have asked him about issues with their sewer pipes and that he was happy to visit properties to see what kind of pipe was coming out of the house and connecting the village system. He said that would help people understand how to treat clogged pipes. He also said that tree roots and grease in the system were major problems and there was not one solution that works for every type of pipe.

At last week’s meeting Mr. Genovese reminded residents that the DPW would be flushing the fire hydrants on June 15 and 16, which might cause some residents to have rust in their water during that time. He stressed that the water was safe.

Ms. Henry said that she had never gotten more positive feedback than she got from the trash pickup day the village hosted last week. Residents could sign up at the Village Hall to have large trash items picked up curbside by the DPW. Mr. Genovese said that his crew picked up trash at about 35 homes before 1 p.m. on the first day of pick-up.

“It was quick and efficient,” he said.

Ms. Henry said that 65 households had signed up for the second trash day June 13.

“It’s great for the community,” said Mayor Tom Curran.

Also at the meeting:

• The board heard from a representative from County Waste, the new village trash hauler, who said that trash day would not change. County Waste offers large, single-stream recycling bins. The first pick-up for the new company will be after the July 4 weekend

•The Chatham Police Department now has a Facebook page for updates and information

• Village Building Inspector Walt Simonsmeier is back at work after a leave of absence. The board authorized attorney Mitch Khosrova to follow up with code enforcement concerns at several properties in the village that Mr. Simonsmeier had been dealing with. They include a trailer park on Center Street, the former Blue Seal property, a property on Hoffman Street and three properties on Kinderhook Street

• The board approved allowing CABA’s Summerfest, an annual event on Main Street, to use the parking lot next to the Tracy Memorial for performances on July 9

• Mayor Curran ended the meeting saying that the loss of village resident and business owner Scott Wood was a tragedy. Mr. Wood died suddenly last month. He said that Mr. Wood had been very involved with village. “We appreciate all he’d done for the community and we’re really going to miss him,” the mayor said.

The next Village Board meeting will be July 14 at 7 p.m. in the Tracy Memorial Village Hall on Main Street.

To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email .

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